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Late Pleistocene and Holocene Abrupt Climate Change and Human Response in the Southeastern United States

Author(s): Christopher Moore ; Mark Brooks ; I. Randolph Daniel Jr.

Year: 2016

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As a result of the analysis of high-resolution global and regional paleoclimate records, we now know that our “stable” Holocene climate has been punctuated with periods of rapid and synchronous change, including rapid changes in temperature, available moisture, and vegetation. Far from being a period of climatic stability, recent studies suggest abrupt climate change during the Holocene including departures in temperature and precipitation with millennial-scale cyclicity that operates independently of glacial/interglacial climate. Recent geoarchaeological evidence from the South Atlantic Coastal Plain has provided evidence for regional-scale burial processes likely operating on millennial time-scales and in response to regional if not global perturbations to the climate system. This evidence includes a limited but pervasive signature of landform aggradation over the Holocene in a variety of depositional environments and geomorphic settings. Periods of rapid climate change and resulting ecological and environmental disruption are implied. In this paper, we examine the evidence and discuss the possible behavioral responses of Late Pleistocene and Holocene hunter-gatherers to rapid climate change events in the Southeast.

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Late Pleistocene and Holocene Abrupt Climate Change and Human Response in the Southeastern United States. Christopher Moore, Mark Brooks, I. Randolph Daniel Jr.. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 403419)


Spatial Coverage

min long: -91.274; min lat: 24.847 ; max long: -72.642; max lat: 36.386 ;

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America